Prague Trams – The Original Hop on Hop off
If you are somebody who wants to stay out past 1am but you don’t fancy tangling with a taxi driver or you don’t relish going into the depths of the metro system but you still want to use public transport then Prague Trams provide you with a 21st Century solution to your predicament.
Prague trams criss-cross the city passing within a 5 minute walk of the majority of Prague’s attractions, they run 24 hours a day (with a reduced night service), they’re clean and they’re safe. The older Prague trams are slowly disappearing which is sad because they had character like the shin-breaking steps that you used to climb, the angled mirror so the driver to see behind him, the hard wooden seats facing sideways and the legendary folding doors that never seem to seal properly. These are gradually being replaced with the newer low-level entry (which I don’t like because you get stuck at the back where there is no door) with doors that hermetically seal, cameras instead of mirrors, comfy seats, electronic signs to let you know where you are and, heaven forbid, air-conditioning for fewer of those “armpit in the face” moments.
But I digress. Prague trams give you the freedom to get out into areas of Prague that you would not normally have considered. My haunt in Karlin Prague 8 for example, cheaper prices than the centre (Prague trams 3 and 8 come here). Republic Square in 4 tram stops or Wenceslas Square in 6. What about another area like Prague 4 called Podoli on the river side and Pankrac on the land side. Both are becoming popular although seen as being at the limits of walking distance they are both only 7 or 8 stops to the centre. Or Prague 10 served on the Vinohrady side by a 24 hour tram line. Or to put it another way no more than 10 minutes on one of the Prague trams means you don’t pay the “centre tax” as we call it and you will save a fair bit of cash.
Beer in Zizkov, more beer in Wenceslas Square, a meal in Andel, a jazz club in the Lesser Town, trendy nightclub in Holesovice. All just a tram ride away. It’s the original hop-on, hop-off.
Prague Trams – Reading the Timetable?
Once you start using Prague trams then you’ll get used to your routes but to start with it’s worth understanding how you read the “stop leaflets” basically the schedule posted at each tram stop. In order, you have to:
- Know the stop that you are at (the name is at the top of the sign post or in BOLD letters on the stop leaflet)
- Know the stop you want to go to and identify the line required (great if it’s on your line otherwise use an app below).
- Look at the times for that day which will be on separate sheets (Pracovni means Mon-Fri, Sobota and Nedele are Sat/Sun).
- Note the time now and identify that hour on the correct timetable i.e. if its 3pm then look for “15”.
- To the right of the hour number are the minutes so you know when the next tram is scheduled to arrive.
- On the left of the tram stop name will be black numbers going down which show how long it will take to get to your stop. NOTE: any tram 5xx is a night tram and has it’s own timetable sheet.
You can see a complete description with pictures on the Understanding Prague Public Transport Timetables post.
There’s an App for That
Check the Prague Apps page for what the “PubTran” and “DPP” icons looks like then just do a Google/Apple search for Prague public transport. Download, turn on your location and type in where you want to go.